This is the moment Blizzard's been building up to for some time. After months of team formations and preliminary matches that weren't publicly watchable, the ambitious Overwatch League is finally kicking off with its debut season.
Luckily, unlike the preliminary matches over the summer, every match of the new season will be streamed on Twitch thanks to a new partnership between the two. In addition, Twitch announced that they will be the lead streaming partner of season two of Overwatch League as well. Viewers can also watch the matches live from Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California, where night one is sold out but the rest of the matches still have seats. Alternatively, the more-exclusive MLG.com will also be streaming the event.Watch live video from OverwatchLeague on www.twitch.tv
Overwatch League is starting Wednesday, January 10 at 4 p.m. PST / 7 p.m. EST. The matches will be broadcast on different channels in multiple languages: English, Chinese, Korean, and French. You can find links to each one on Blizzard's blog preparing for the big event.
The two teams starting off the week are local to where some of us at USgamer are based in California, with the tangerine-hued San Francisco Shock facing off against the emerald green Los Angeles Valiant. (For some odd reason, Los Angeles somehow net two teams in Overwatch League, in case you were wondering. I hope that means San Francisco has hope to get another team without an ugly color palette one day.) The other Los Angeles team, Los Angeles Gladiators, are fittingly closing out the debut week of matches on Saturday, January 13 as they face off against Seoul Dynasty.
The premiere season that's vowing to redefine how esports are structured is built much like any other sport: there's a preseason, which has already concluded. Starting this week is Stage One, a five-week period of matches between teams with a prize pool of $125,000. There are four stages in total (each with the same prize pool), running until June 16. After that, it's time for the Playoffs, then on to the Grand Finals, and finally the All-Star Weekend.
If you want to play along while you cheer for your favorite Overwatch League teams, you can get a matching skin to go along with your favorite team in-game right now. It'll cost you though, except if you login by February 13, then you get some freebie tokens to cash in for one of the Overwatch League's new 312 skins.
You can find the entire Stage One schedule for The Overwatch League below.
January 10, Wednesday
- 4 p.m. PST / 7 p.m. EST - San Francisco Shock vs. Los Angeles Valiant
- 6 p.m. PST / 9 p.m. EST - Shanghai Dragons vs. Los Angeles Gladiators
- 8 p.m. PST / 11 p.m. EST - Dallas Fuel vs. Seoul Dynasty
January 11, Thursday
- 2 p.m. PST / 5 p.m. EST - London Spitfire vs. Florida Mayhem
- 4 p.m. PST / 7 p.m. EST - Philadelphia Fusion vs. Houston Outlaws
- 6 p.m. PST / 9 p.m. EST - Boston Uprising vs. New York Excelsior
January 12, Friday
- 4 p.m. PST / 7 p.m. EST - Los Angeles Valiant vs. Dallas Fuel
- 6 p.m. PST / 9 p.m. EST - Florida Mayhem vs. Boston Uprising
- 8 p.m. PST / 11 p.m. EST - San Francisco Shock vs. Shanghai Dragons
January 13, Saturday
- 11 a.m. PST / 2 p.m. EST - London Spitfire vs. Philadelphia Fusion
- 1 p.m. PST / 4 p.m. EST - New York Excelsior vs. Houston Outlaws
- 3 p.m. PST / 6 p.m. EST - Seoul Dynasty vs. Los Angeles Gladiators